Muhammad Ali passed away on June 3rd 2016, leaving behind him a legacy worthy of remembrance in the world of sports . He was the first boxer to win the undisputed world heavyweight boxing title three times. He was a global icon and a prominent activist throughout the Muslim world, having converted to Islam in 1964.
It is because of his notable achievements that the Qatar Museums has opened a show posthumously dedicated to Ali, titled ‘Muhammad Ali: Tribute to a Legend, starting July 7th. The show has been curated by Qatar’s 3-2-1- Olympic and Sports Museum, under the patronage of HE Sheikha Al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalida Al-Thani. This display will bring together 22 artifacts that revolve around the life and times of the late boxing champion.
The artifacts included in the exhibition cover photography from Ali’s outdoor exhibition bout at the Doha Stadium in 1971, as well as his significantly momentous ‘draft exemption’ letter, which will be exhibited for the very first time. This will mark the letter’s 50th anniversary.
Other notable memorabilia on display include Ali’s journey to the 1960 Rome Olympics, where he struck gold. It also includes Ali’s two world titles from 1964 against Sonny Liston, 1974 in the jungle fight in Kinshasa Zaire in 1974, as well as his final world title winning against Leon Spinks in New Orleans in 1978.
Khalid Yousef Al-Ibrahim, a Consultant at Qatar Museums excitedly commented on this event, saying him and his teams were “pleased to organize this innovative exhibition and to show out important collection ahead of it moving into the 3-2-1- Olympic and Sports Museum’s permanent home at Khalifa International Stadium. For many in Qatar and throughout the Arab world, Muhammad Ali truly was ‘The Greatest” – an icon and inspiration as an athlete and a man. This retrospective celebrates that.”